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Mother’s tortured hours waiting for news of daughter at concert turns into devastating heartbreak

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MANCHESTER, England — The mother of 15-year-old Olivia Campbell — who attended the Ariana Grande concert in Manchester England, with a friend — said on a Facebook post that her daughter is among the dead.

Hours after the Manchester Arena bombing, Olivia Campbell, 15, was registered as missing person No. 13.

“We thought she would have just walked home by that point,” her mother, Charlotte, told CNN Tuesday.

Campbell had not heard from Olivia since Monday night, when she went to the Ariana Grande concert with a friend for his birthday. Her daughter called before a suspected suicide attacker detonated a bomb as throngs of people were pouring out the concert in Manchester.

CNN interviewed Charlotte by telephone after the terrorist attack. She said she hadn’t heard from her daughter or her daughter’s friend, and calls to her cell phone simply went to messaging. She had to wait hours without knowing if her daughter was safe or injured.

She found out later that 15-year-old Olivia was among the 22 killed in the terrorist attack.

The suspected bomber died in the blast Monday night, which left the wounded and the dead scattered across the arena’s bloodied entrance and sent screaming girls running for cover, according to police.

“We’re going to (search) … and we’ll do it every single day until we find that little girl,” Olivia’s stepfather, Paul Hodgson, said in an interview before they knew the outcome.

Olivia had gone to the concert with her friend Adam to celebrate his birthday. Her stepfather said Olivia liked to sing herself. She loved music.

“It was like a dream come true to her,” Hodgson said of the concert.

Olivia had called her mother to say how happy she was to be at the arena. She was waiting for Ariana Grande to come on.

“She thanked me and said she loved me and that was the last I heard from her,” said Campbell, close to tears.

When she learned about the attack, Campbell said, she notified the police, called local hospitals and, with the help of a friend, sent out descriptions of Olivia on Facebook and Twitter.

“I’m going to find her,” Hodgson said. “I’m going to bring her home.”

Before they found out what had happened, Campbell and Hodgson said they would continue sharing Olivia’s photos in hopes that someone had seen her.

“If one person sees it and that one person sees her, we can get her back,” he said. “That’s all we ask. We don’t want much …. At this present moment, we need our Oli back.”

“I love her so much,” Campbell said, in tears. “I want her home. I need her home. She is my baby. I miss her so much. If she is out there, just phone, just phone. I’ll be there. I don’t care where she is. I’ll be there.”

On her Facebook page Tuesday, Charlotte Campbell wrote of her daughter: “RIP my darling precious gorgeous girl Olivia Campbell taken far far to soon go sing with the angels and keep smiling mummy loves you so much”